Fast bowler Peter Connell took three wickets in nine balls to bowl Ireland to a pulsating four-run victory over Bermuda on the Duckworth-Lewis Method which earned it a place in the semi-final of the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier in Stormont in Belfast, Ireland on Sunday.
The top-seeded home side now faces second-seeded Kenya in the first semi-final on Monday which starts at 0930 (local time) while the second semi-final will be played between the Netherlands and Scotland and will start at 1300 (local time).
Connell, named man of the match, dismissed Christopher Foggo, David Hemp and Stephen Outerbridge to finish with figures of 2-0-8-3 as Bermuda, chasing a revised target of 46 runs in nine overs, was restricted at 41-8.
After Ireland captain William Porterfield elected to bat in overcast conditions, his side plunged into serious trouble and when a brief spell of heavy rain stopped play the home side was reeling at 41-4 in eight overs.
When play resumed after two hours, the match was reduced to a nine-overs-per-side contest. That meant Ireland had six balls to increase its total but its batsmen, in an effort to hit every ball out of the park, could score only two runs and lost three wickets in that final over.
But with the odds heavily against it, Ireland produced a magical bowling performance, led by Connell who was excellently supported by Andre Botha who took 2-4. Alex Cusack, though he didn't pick a wicket, conceded just five runs off his two overs as Bermuda started its chase knowing it needed to knock off the runs in eight overs to qualify ahead of Ireland.
It failed and the semi-finals line-up was confirmed including the home side.